“It’s a neighborhood where you still feel involved in the city, but you’re just off the edge,” she said.
Bordered to the west by Glover Archbold Park and to the south by Whitehaven Park, both part of the Rock Creek Park system, the neighborhood feels like a village within a city, according to Maggie Simpson, president of the community’s civic association, who’s lived in a Glover Park rowhouse for the past 31 years.
The brick and stucco rowhouses form the architectural heart of Glover Park, which also has larger apartment buildings, garden apartments and some detached homes.
Like Sherman, Simpson thinks the highlight of living in the tree-lined neighborhood is being able to take a quick walk or bus ride to Georgetown or Dupont Circle in the morning and then spend an afternoon in the woods.
“I feel like I’m out on a hike in the Shenandoah National Park, walking on trails for hours,” she said. “It’s something I cherish.”
But it’s not just the idea of living in a city so close to nature that draws people to the neighborhood. Sherman says the area has a great sense of neighborliness.
“It’s like Georgetown with less showmanship and more of a close-knit community feeling,” she said.
When Sherman, who works as a global health consultant, bought her home in 2005, three women on her block wrote her cards welcoming her to the area.
“They had me over and kind of adopted me, showed me around, and welcomed me in,” she said. “That’s reflective of the sense of community here, the kind of care people have for their neighbors.”
That caring was especially felt during the coronavirus pandemic, according to Simpson. Early on, she put together a group of more than 50 volunteers who went grocery shopping or picked up prescriptions for neighbors who couldn’t leave their homes.
“We had food drives and meal drop-offs throughout the last 18 months,” Sherman said. She had two Thanksgiving meals sent to her home last year and one Christmas meal delivered by neighbors.
Many community events were canceled during the pandemic, including Glover Park Day, which is held each June, Simpson said. But she expects the festival, with children’s rides, games and food, will restart again next year.
Yet, neighbors still had plenty to do, and a group of artists even put together a pandemic art walk last year, she said.
“You could walk from house to house with a map to look at the art and remain socially distant,” Simpson said.
All of the rowhouses have front porches, Sherman noted. “That was a lifesaver during the pandemic.”
Simpson says it made isolating much easier, since neighbors could sit on their front porches and talk with others on the street. “What a difference it made,” she said.
Lisa McCluskey, civic association vice president, turned front-porch socializing into a musical event. She organized Glover Park’s first Porch Fest, asking novice and professional musicians to perform on their front porches to entertain the community.
“People of all ages strolled around and listened,” she said. “It made the neighborhood come alive.”
Like much of Washington, Glover Park started out as farmland, according to a Glover Park history website run by the neighborhood’s unofficial historian, Carlton Fletcher. In the early 1800s, the area was settled by immigrants from Germany and Ireland, and by free and enslaved African Americans.
In the mid-1800s, the city of Georgetown kept its poorhouse and workhouse in the community, where Guy Mason Recreation Center is now located, near Calvert and 36th streets NW. The neighborhood was also dominated by butchers and slaughterhouses that supplied meat for the city.
In 1907, Charles Carroll Glover, a businessman, conservationist and president of Riggs Bank, bought more than 3,000 acres from a master butcher. Part of the land became Glover Archbold Park. From the 1920s until the mid-1930s, developer Benjamin Gruver built rowhouses. With faux Tudor or Federal features, the three-level homes were 18 to 20 feet wide with three bedrooms, one bathroom and a summer sleeping porch.
The homes had something else that was common in Washington when Glover Park was built: racial covenants in their deeds. Owners had to agree to never rent, lease, sell or transfer their property to “any negro or colored person or any person of colored extraction,” as one contract stated. Such language was finally removed in 1967.
Sherman’s home, built in the early 1930s, was one of those original structures and was completely renovated in the early 2000s, she says. Now it features an open floor plan on the main level with an updated kitchen and bathroom, hardwood floors and high ceilings. Upstairs are three bedrooms with an additional bedroom and a kitchenette in the basement.
“Each house has its own character and warmth,” she said. “They’re all very inviting in their own way.”
Glover Park is known for its two community gardens, with plots available to the public, according to Chris Jones, a real estate agent with Long & Foster and a resident of the neighborhood. Gardening is another part of daily life that kept people going during the pandemic, and many also grow vegetables and flowers in their yards.
McCluskey, the civic association vice president, said having Stoddert Recreation Center and the adjacent Stoddert Elementary School, along with the Guy Mason Recreation Center a few blocks away, gave her three sons places to run and play within walking distance. As a kindergarten teacher at Stoddert Elementary School, she is proud of the school’s reputation and said it is one of the main draws for young families to move to Glover Park.
She also likes the diversity in the neighborhood. Her kindergarten class has children from Azerbaijan, Serbia, Russia and Lithuania, and she encourages her own boys to have more children from other countries as friends.
But some people are getting priced out of the community. Jones said the lowest sale price for a house last year was $740,000. It was a three-bedroom, two-bathroom house. That house was renovated during the year and resold for $1.7 million, becoming the highest-priced sale.
Jones said condos and co-ops tend to be more affordable. The least expensive, a 400-square-foot efficiency, sold for $190,000, and the most expensive, a two-bedroom, three-bathroom condo, sold for $940,000. The average price for a one-bedroom rental in the area was $1,880 a month.
Living there: Glover Park is bordered by Wisconsin Avenue to the east, Whitehaven Park to the south, Glover Archbold Park to the west and Tunlaw Road to the north.
Schools: Stoddert Elementary, Hardy Middle, Wilson High School.
Transit: Metrobuses and the D.C. Circulator bus serve the neighborhood. The closest Metro stations are Cleveland Park, Dupont Circle and Tenleytown on the Red Line, all of which are about two miles away. Wisconsin Avenue is the main thoroughfare.
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